Greetings from The Aero Experience Team


The Aero Experience is a celebration of Midwest aviation and aerospace achievement. We invite you to join us as we explore the treasures of Midwest aviation through first-hand experiences. Our contributors take turns flying lead, and we are always looking for new destinations. Check in with The Aero Experience frequently to see where we will land today, and then go out and have your own aero experiences!

Blue skies,

Carmelo Turdo, Mark Nankivil and Fred Harl - The Aero Experience Team

Thursday, April 1, 2021

Humanitarian Group Looks For Support to Update Aircraft for Service to Children's Home in Guatemala

By Carmelo Turdo
In the summer of 2018, Dave Reichard and Tom Stukenberg, the current and former Directors respectively, of the Manos de Compasion (Hands of Compassion) Children's Home in the Bay of Santiago Atitlan, Guatemala, were looking for a small twin-engine aircraft to replace their aging Cessna 172. Due to the poor road conditions and mountainous terrain, air transportation is the most efficient way of travel to pick up supplies and meet with government officials in the family court system in Guatemala City. An aircraft was found in the U.S., but it would need substantial maintenance before it could be put into service.

Over the next year and a half, the Midwest Aviation community stepped up and the green and white Piper Geronimo was flown to Guatemala in February 2020. It has been a blessing to the children at Manos de Compasion and the local community ever since. The following people dedicated their time and resources to make the aircraft available for this humanitarian service:

Paul Voorhees and the crew at Big River Aviation; Kevin Hammond, St Louis Community College; Steve Long, One Spirit Engineering; and Nick Turk, Turk Aviation. The Aero Experience documented the contributions of all the many talented and caring people who participated in the aircraft return to service.

Manos de Compasion has a need for additional avionics equipment to operate their Piper Geronimo safely in the Guatemalan mountains. The aircraft does not have a stall warning system, and there is a need for a Garmin Angle of Attack system to be installed. Steve Long of One Spirit Engineering will be volunteering his time and expenses to travel to Guatemala to install the system once it is purchased. A goal of $2,000 for the purchase of the equipment has been set for the project.

Please consider making a tax-deductible donation at the link below, with all proceeds going directly to this project to support of Manos de Compasion. Thank you for your generosity!

Project fund:

For more information on Manos de Compasion and the aircraft project, see The Aero Experience four-part series and the video posted below.

Ministry Uses Aircraft to Care for Children in Guatemala, Part Four: One Mission Accomplished, Another One Begins

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